A town’s history has been secured as its archive prepares to move following major funding.

St Ives Town Council, working in close partnership with St Ives Archive, have announced that community ownership funding has been secured to help the relocation of the archive to the historic Market House.  

Plans involve the renovation of the first floor of Market House to bring the archive back to the heart of the town. The distinctive Grade II listed building will have an improved access and be opened up to the community for the first time in decades.  

In total £275,000 has been awarded, which will enable the restoration and refurbishment works, improving the access to the building while enhancing the important historic features. The community ownership fund has so far awarded £71.4-million to 257 projects across the UK, and the St Ives Archive’s relocation to Market House is part of the third round of the fund.  

Returning to the heart of the town, the archive will be able to welcome more visitors, revealing a wealth of important local material and by moving to Market House, a unique local landmark building will be restored and safeguarded for the future.  

The second community open day at Market House, took place on Thursday, March 28, between 10am and 3pm. This recent announcement made the day more special as there is now great confidence that the project will become a reality.  

Market House in St Ives

All were welcome to take a look inside Market House on the day, enjoy a celebratory slice of cake, and view the exhibition about Bryan Pearce, renowned St Ives artist, who portrayed Market House in his paintings, many times.  

Cllr Tony Harris, chair of the finance and general purposes committee for St Ives Town Council said: “I am absolutely delighted at this news! St Ives Archive can realise their long-held dream of moving back into the heart of our community, where it belongs.  

“The move to the Market House will help the Centre provide archival and local history services for many more local people and visitors alike. This will help further safeguard and promote our local heritage for generations to come.  

Lyn Burchess, chair of the archive, added: “We have been working very closely with the town council for many months on this exciting project, with the aim of moving back into town. The Market House is an iconic building, and it’s a perfect fit for the Archive, allowing more people to access our wonderful heritage. 

“Its new home, Market House has its own fascinating history and is a perfect match. Funding has made this possible, but it would not have happened without the trustees at the centre and the town council’s own team working tirelessly together for this to come to fruition.”